Silicon in Agriculture - South African Chapter (SASAC)
The SASAC is the South African association of the International Society for Silicon in Agriculture, created to provide a vehicle for research and the dissemination of information on the role of silicon in agriculture. For many years its role as a fertilizer of crops has been questioned or ignored. But in the last 20 years, an overwhelming body of solid research has been developed that shows conclusively that silicon is an important element for most plants. Perhaps the most interesting aspect is the diversity of roles that soluble silicon plays in plant physiologies, in particular, with respect to biotic and abiotic stress. It is a remarkably rewarding field to be in, with important discoveries being made on a regular basis by scientists scattered all over the world.
Given the shortage of plant-available silicon in Africa, and especially South Africa, it is appropriate that there should be a vigorous community of silicon in Agriculture researchers in South Africa. From the pioneering work of Jan Meyer on sugarcane in the 1970’s, the community has grown to the extent that a South African workshop on Silicon in Agriculture is held by SASAC in August each year. This provides a forum for the latest developments to be presented, especially by university students.
SASAC’s goals are simple: to share our knowledge and enthusiasm for this exciting subject of Silicon in Agriculture with scientists and the agricultural community in South Africa.
Please join us in this endeavour.